Inside Iowa State
Jan. 24, 1997
In-house campaign goal set at $10 million
by Anne Dolan
The Hiras and the Burnets have their eyes on $10 million.
That is the goal in the university community component of Campaign Destiny, Iowa State's five-year capital campaign. Labh and Tahira Hira, and George and Agatha Burnet have volunteered to lead the in-house campaign for current and retired employees, respectively. About 100 volunteers at the department or unit level will assist them.
The goals and objectives of Campaign Destiny are tied to the university's goal of becoming the best land-grant university in the country.
So far, more than $3.2 million has been pledged by current and retired employees to "The Drive from Within."
"This is not a dictate, this is not required of anyone," said Tahira Hira, professor of human development and family studies. "People make choices about their charitable contributions, and we hope if education is important to you, you will consider Iowa State for one of your contributions.
"The leveraging of money in education is phenomenal. It changes people and fates," she added.
Beyond the monetary goal, participation is what campaign leaders seek. In Iowa State's previous campaign, retired and current employees contributed about $9.1 million.
"It makes a better case when you go outside if you have people inside believing in themselves and supporting the university," said Labh Hira, professor of finance and associate dean in the College of Business. "One of the first questions our outside fund-raisers hear is, 'Have you sold it to yourself yet?'"
When pledge cards are distributed in March and April, faculty and staff may support any area of the campaign they choose. They also may give unrestricted gifts, which allow campaign officials to place the money where it is needed. In the past, unrestricted giving has funded distinguished professorships, teaching awards, travel grants and P&S service awards.
Giving options include cash (including payroll deduction), real estate, life insurance, securities, retirement funds and provisions in wills. Seminars are planned for those in the university community who would like to learn more about planned giving options.
When donors request it, gifts will be kept confidential. A check-off box on the pledge form activates this option.
The Burnets will focus their efforts on retired faculty and staff still residing in Iowa.
"Of all the individuals who will be approached during this campaign, we think this group has a large stake in Iowa State," said George Burnet, who retired in 1995 after nearly 40 years as a faculty member in chemical engineering and administrator in the College of Engineering. "This has been their life. We hope they want to preserve and strengthen what's here."
Burnet also said retired faculty and staff understand the growing importance of private fund raising at public universities. "They realize that if a university is to remain strong and vital, it must have more than legislative appropriations and research funding. That third component, private giving, has to be there. That's a reality," he said.
Agatha Burnet, who retired in 1993 after 37 years on the College of Family and Consumer Sciences faculty, noted that like her and her husband, a significant percentage of Iowa State employees received degrees here.
"And you expect your school to maintain high standards," she said. "It's important that your university keeps a strong reputation."
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